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Topic: New here and question about RWAP

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Subject: New here and question about RWAP
Date Posted: 9/24/2009 8:32 AM ET
Member Since: 5/3/2009
Posts: 1,393
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I just had my first RWAP as a sender, and after reading the help documents and searching this forum I am still not sure how to handle this one. 

I mailed out a book that was in almost brand new condition,  a hardcover that only was missing the dust jacket.  I wrapped it in a heavy brown paperbag and tons of packing tape.   The requestor marked it a RWAP on arrival, saying that I violated their RC  --- which stipulate that they don't want library books or water damaged books.   The member didn't PM me,  so I PM'd them saying that I was a little confused about why they would RWAP the book. 

Well, I finally got a PM back from the member saying that the book arrived wet,  because there has been a ton of rain there and also that all of his mail was wet as well.  

Ok,  so that means that it was an RWAP because of USPS damage then.  Correct?  Not me vioating their RC.    Yes, my fault for not wrapping the book in plastic so I have learned my lesson.   I do feel bad for the member, especially if all of their mail arrived sogging wet.  That is terrible. 

This is why I need some help -  the member didn't ask for a credit back,  or even initiate the conversation with me via pm,  so I am not sure what I need to do.   Is it automatically assumed that since the book arrived wet from rain that I have to refund the credit?   Or should the member correct the RWAP on their end and say that they made a mistake and marked the wrong reason?  

I want to do the right thing here,  and my first instinct is to just refund the credit and ask the member to mark the RWAP as resolved. 

I did send a book in pristine shape,  and even though I wrapped it well, it still got damaged by rain. 

So what would you do in this situation?  

Thanks in advance for all advice :) 

Date Posted: 9/24/2009 9:03 AM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2005
Posts: 10,719
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It is NOT your fault that the book got water damaged if you wrapped it well. You do not owe this person a credit. And they should NOT have used RWAP - sender - RC violations - they should have used RWAP - USPS at fault. You need to ask the receiver to mark the transaction resolved as it was definitely not your fault. If they refuse to do so, you can use the Contact Us button at the bottom of the screen and copy their PM to you stating that the book was water damaged by the post office, and it's possible PBS will remove the problem transaction from your account.

Date Posted: 9/24/2009 9:07 AM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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Wow- good question.  Plastic wrap is not required for mailing books so the book shouldn't have been marked RWAP (IMO).  If it is not a library book or and wasn't sent with water damage you met the RC.  Maybe his mailbox is leaky or open to the elements.  So it may not be the PO fault either.  They can go in and change RWAP to marked as a mistake.  

Returning  or asking for a credit returned is optional  I have marked books RWAP because of staining and spine damage but I have not asked for my credit to be returned.

Did they mark the transaction resolved?  Did you respond to their last message - indicating that the book was not water damaged when you sent it out and it sounds like it was damaged in transit and not due to poor wrapping?  If the transaction is marked resolved then it is up to you if you send a credit.  If not, they may be waiting for a response from you or waiting for you to offer the credit.

Personally, if I had the credits, I would send them a credit because they are having such a lousy time of it and not because it didn't meet PBS or RC standards.

PS:  I would use plastic wrap - I live in the NE and we tons of rain this summer.  Just popping out of my car to get the mail - I was drenched.  Good Luck

Date Posted: 9/24/2009 9:08 AM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,125
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Yes, the book is properly marked RWAP - Damaged by USPS.

You don't need to return his credit. When a book is damaged by the Post Office, PBS says the sender is allowed to keep the credit unless their packaging contributed to the damage. (One example of bad packaging that might contribute to damage is using scotch tape to seal the package ... scotch tape often causes books to become lost or damaged, and PBS specifically instructs to use packaging tape). Waterproof packaging is not required by PBS. The only way that you might want to think about returning the credit is, if the RC actually requested that the packaging include plastic wrap or some other waterproofing in it (some people do include this in their RCs)

If it were me, I would ask them to mark it resolved without returning the credit.

Last Edited on: 9/24/09 9:09 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/24/2009 9:09 AM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,220
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I would go to your Transaction Archive and check to see what their RCs were on the request. Some people do include plastic wrap in their RCs. If they did not request special wrapping, then you did not violate their RCs and I would PM them and tell them that they marked the book incorrectly and they should ask the site to switch it from RWP-didn't meet RCs, to RWP-damaged by the USPS. A damaged by USPS does not require you to return the credit  unless the wrapping did not meet PBS standards and contributed to the damage.

I would also recommend a plastic wrap on all the books you send in the future. Its not required, but it can save a book from bad weather and we're moving into the rainy season and then the snow will be here.

Last Edited on: 9/25/09 10:07 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/25/2009 10:04 AM ET
Member Since: 5/3/2009
Posts: 1,393
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Thanks so much for all your help!   I really appreciate it :)

Another question ---  how can I tell if the transaction has been marked as resolved?   Does that mean that the red check showing a problem is gone?  Will it be replaced with the big green checkmark? 

Date Posted: 9/25/2009 10:47 AM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2009
Posts: 301
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I think a resolved RWAP has a red checkmark with a squiggly line in the blue background but it will say "resolved" when you hover over it.  At least, that's what my resolved RWAP as a receiver has.

Last Edited on: 9/25/09 10:48 AM ET - Total times edited: 1